Beijing has demanded military outposts in Balochistan during a recent visit of the Pakistan army’s top leadership to China, CNN-News18 has learnt.
Top military sources said that Chinese authorities displayed reservations about the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and their staff’s security in Pakistan.
Islamabad Police recently decided to set up a foreign security cell at the Central Police Office (CPO) with requisite staff and logistics following reports of Chinese nationals being repeatedly attacked in Pakistan.
“A senior level tri service military delegation of Pakistan visited Peoples Republic of China from 9 to 12 June 2022. The delegation held wide ranging discussions with senior officials of Chinese military and other government departments. Apex Meeting was held on 12 June wherein Pakistani side was headed by Chief of Army Staff (COAS), General Qamar Javed Bajwa while Chinese side was led by General Zhang Youxia Vice Chairman Central Military Commission of China,” said the Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR), the media and PR wing of the Pakistan armed forces, in a press release.
According to the military sources, the Chinese want military outposts in Balochistan, particularly in Gwadar.
The Pakistan military leadership requested some time to consider the demands with the country also facing pressure from the United States for the bases, they added.
Baloch insurgents have been attacking CPEC projects and personnel because they consider China an imperialist power that, along with the Pakistan government, is trying to snatch Balochistan’s natural resources.
During the visit, the Pakistan military leadership also assured Beijing of the security of CPEC projects and Chinese citizens in the country.
“Both sides discussed their perspectives on international and regional security situation, and expressed satisfaction on defence cooperation between the two countries. Pakistan and China reaffirmed their strategic partnership in challenging times and agreed to continue regular exchange of perspectives on issues of mutual interest. Both sides also vowed to enhance their training, technology and counterterrorism cooperation at tri service level.,” the ISPR statement said.